Wasn't too sure how Zev would react to being confined on a boat for 8 hours. Does help when the boat is a nice 21 foot Ranger, fully loaded with gear, latest electronics, etc. More importantly, my confidence in Mark to put us on to some very good multi species fishing in the Montreal area, short drive from home.
Day started off with Zev getting to drive the big Ranger, equipped with a nice 250 HP Mercury engine.
After getting to our first walleye spot to drift fish, Mark decided to head off to troll another area, based on wind direction being wrong for the drift we require to drift fish for walleye.
Next spot has a mix of good numbers of pike, with some big walleye mixed in. None of the walleye came to play, but we did catch 9 pike trolling for a while. I assisted Zev during his turns at the rod, as he's still on the young side of being able to properly reel in most game fish species.
First time he's ever caught pike, those teeth never seem to thrill kids that age.
Eli did just fine fighting the pike on his own, as this was his third time out fishing with Mark.
After a while, Mark too us to a spot with some decent size smallmouth bass. Water was clear enough for us to spot them chasing our lures, and we caught 8 smallmouth bass casting over the next hour or so.
As Zev has already caught some bass earlier this season, he knew how to handle them on his own.
Eli managed some smallmouth bass of his own with Mark's guidance as well. Not sure if he's caught smallmouth bass any in the past, but they are the first smallmouth bass he remembers catching.
As the wind had shifted, we headed to a new spot to drift for walleye. We did manage to land 7 smaller fish, all under the slot size of 13 or so inches. Didn't bother with any pics, as we were hoping for bigger ones, shame because Zev's first walleye was caught on camera. As more people started fishing the spot next to us, we opted to get back to trolling.
As it was past noon and a lot warmer, Zev was exhausted and fell asleep on the deck. Perfect timing for Eli's luck, as the pike bite was very good, we landed another 11 pike in about an hour or so. Again, nothing really big, but Eli was perfectly content not having to do much except pick up one of our rods to fight a pike every few minutes.
Against Eli's protests, we headed back to our first spot of the morning to drift fish for a mix of walleye and smallmouth bass. He wasn't quite thrilled to have to work a drop shot rig on the drift, trolling with rods in holders is so much easier.
However, he was quickly rewarded with the biggest bass of the day, this one pushing 4 lbs.
After 3 more bass, I managed another small walleye that spit the hook at boatside, and then just as we were about to changes fishing spots, I hook into a decent walleye, first and last good one of the day. I gave it to Eli for the picture.
All in all, a good 40+ fish of 3 game species caught on Mark's boat, who's ability to put fishing customers onto insanely good numbers, of quality fish no matter what the conditions are, is second to none. His patience explaining and teaching technique for kids is very good, and few can compare to his fishing knowledge and experience.
For guided outings, Mark can be contacted by clicking: http://freshwaterphil.com/contactmark.cfm